Most mornings I go out early and watch the sunrise over Lopez Island and San Juan Channel. I look at it from various vantages on the south end of San Juan Island where I live. Or I look south, toward the Olympic Mountains and note the visible detail on that particular day. If the light is revealing some new relationship between forms I’ve seen a thousand times, then it’s like I’ve never seen them before and I have to paint it. What I’m actually painting is the illuminated space that contains all these forms.
My painting method is fairly improvisational, while still trying to make it “like”; and, how it is painted is partly what it’s about. When to restrain or release the impulse to move the brush, and which way to move it, is at the crux of it. Of course, there is a lot of analysis and sharpening the eye to the salient points. Not to mention delicate and secret technical tricks, which I would be happy to impart.
Ultimately, it’s all a kind of homage to the primal elements, to the earth, water and sky that we see around us, and to the Sun’s light that reveals them.
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